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When you have a brother-in-law (B-I-L) who loves cooking, you magnanimously let him take over your kitchen and play the role of Master Chef, while you relax in the company of your sis, his wife, and the Lord and Master (L & M). Of course the sis would have done a lot of peeling and slicing of vegetables in the capacity of sidekick to the Chef before he starts on his mission.

So it happened that we gorged ourselves silly on pasta, rolls, and also traditional dish like dal, not to mention the different salads with a pinch of this and a dash of that which makes all the difference to a dish turning out to be a masterpiece. If you are thinking all this praise is aimed at luring him back to the kitchen you’d not be far from the truth. Ahem.

By the way, there is one thing about this man-in-the-kitchen that makes him welcome and which when I relate, will have all the women readers, that is those who cook, go ‘ohh wow!’ So get ready gals and listen to this: He leaves the kitchen sparkling clean, better even than it had been when handed over to him. The knives, spoons etc make it back to their place, the vessels used are all washed (in spite of my constant reminders that I can easily put them in the dishwasher) and left to dry, the kitchen surface wiped, and left gleaming. That’s probably lessons from the sis, or maybe not. (I wrote that last sentence to save my skin. In case it is the sis that taught him, she’d be pleased, in case it is not, he wouldn’t be displeased. Smart, eh?)

Anyway, getting back.

The day following one such dinner, I couldn’t find the pepper shaker.

“Hey B-I-L!” I called from the kitchen. “where is the pepper shaker?”

“It is _____” he told me where it was.

Meanwhile the L & M was heard saying something that was lost in the burst of sound from the television, probably Arnab haranguing someone or other about how the Nation Wants To Know The Brand Of Pickle Used and Why It Was Used. Suffice to say that when Arnab speaks you can hear no one but Arnab, not even if they be sitting next to you. Then how could I have heard the L & M from the kitchen?

The B-I-L could be seen laughing. If there is something to laugh about, I wanna know too. So I asked what the joke was. It seems the L & M found it mighty amusing that I did not know the whereabouts of the pepper shaker in my own kitchen and had to ask the B-I-L.

Another day I wanted to know where the B-I-L had kept the masala grinder, and yet another day it was probably something else like, “Where did you keep the knife with the yellow handle?” and may be a, “Is there any tomato sauce left?” or “Did you see the kitchen scissors?” or things along those lines.

By the third time it happened, the L & M turned to the B-I-L and trying to keep a straight face said,

“Don’t be surprised if she calls you up when you are back home,” he said referring to me, “She will want to know where you have kept the chilli powder or coriander powder, or may be the belan, or the coconut oil or the tea-strainer or any of those things!”

And since the time the B-I-L and sis left he has been teasing me mercilessly, asking me whether I know what’s where in my kitchen or whether we should call the sis and B-I-L up to ask. But no worries. I am going to have the last laugh after all. Tomorrow I go on a little trip, all by myself, and guess who will be calling me up to ask what’s kept where? No prizes for guessing though!

See you all when I get back. Cheers.